Montserrat, known as the Caribbean’s own Emerald Isle, shares much in common with Ireland. The Irish influence is evident in the surnames of many residents, the island’s resemblance to Ireland’s coast, and the enthusiasm with which Montserrat celebrates St Patrick’s Day. Montserrat is the only place outside of Ireland where St Patrick’s Day is an official public holiday.
From the island’s Carnival, which kicks off the New Year, to the musical competitions held in Sturge Park every Boxing Day, music plays a significant role in most Montserrat holidays and festivals. Although Montserrat is the only jurisdiction outside of Ireland where St Patrick’s Day is an official government holiday, locals extend the celebration to a week. The Montserrat International Fishing Tournament and the Volcano Half Marathon are the island’s most popular sporting events.
Goat water, a thick goat meat stew eaten with crusty bread rolls, is Montserrat’s national cuisine. Most local eateries, on the other hand, provide a wide variety of basic meals. On most menus, fish, and chicken vastly outweigh red meat selections. At the same time, beverages such as handmade ginger beer, sorrel, and a range of juices produced from Montserrat’s unique tropical fruits are popular. The majority of eateries are only open throughout the day, and the dress code is pretty relaxed.2